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Football: with its incredible final sprint, the Premier League is more than ever the sexiest championship

The summit clash between Manchester City and Arsenal this Sunday March 31 unfortunately caused a stir.

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Football: with its incredible final sprint, the Premier League is more than ever the sexiest championship

The summit clash between Manchester City and Arsenal this Sunday March 31 unfortunately caused a stir. The colossal stakes paralyzed the legs, cooled the enthusiasm, and finally gave birth to a soporific 0-0. But this draw at least has the merit of creating suspense at the top of the Premier League. With nine games remaining, Gunners (2nd, 65 points) and Skyblues (3rd, 64 points) are within one point, behind Liverpool who are leading with 67 points. Very clever who can predict the name of the future champion of England.

“Liverpool advantage at the moment, and Arsenal are not giving up, but with nine matches still to play, I see Manchester City favorites for the title,” assures former striker Alan Shearer, consultant for the BBC. Former Manchester United defender Gary Neville was impressed by Arsenal, seeking their first domestic success since 2004. “They look like a team that can go all the way, with much better strength mental,” he noted on Sky Sports. But be careful not to underestimate the Reds, who will give everything for the last season of their coach, Jürgen Klopp. “We just want to win every trophy we can for him and give him the best possible start,” young defender Conor Bradley recently told TNT Sports.

This three-way battle for the title is unprecedented in Europe. In the other championships, the matter is over. PSG, Bayer Leverkusen, Inter Milan and Real Madrid will respectively be champions of France, Germany, Italy and Spain. The suspense is to be found elsewhere, in the contests for European places or maintenance. When it comes to the glorious uncertainty of sport, England is the place to be. And the Premier League is asserting itself more than ever as the sexiest championship in the world. “It’s the only country where five or six teams can win. It’s an unpredictable championship, the most unpredictable in which I have played,” summarized Pep Guardiola, the manager of Manchester City, in an interview with the Telegraph in 2018.

Its detractors can always argue that this Manchester City has been champion five times in six years. But his quests have rarely been long, quiet rivers, especially compared to the regular walks of PSG in France and Bayern Munich in Germany. Last year, Arsenal held the distance for a long time before cracking in the very last moments. In 2021-2022 and 2018-2019, Liverpool failed to one point. The well-established “Big 6” – Manchester City, Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea, Tottenham – promote a notion dear to sports economists: competitive balance. Simon Rottenberg defined it in 1956 as the equality of sporting forces in a competition or match. The better it is, the more uncertain the result, the greater the interest for the spectators.

But suspense isn't everything. The Premier League is also the most spectacular league with an average of 3.25 goals scored per match. This is a little more than the Bundesliga (3.19), renowned for its river scores, and much more than the Liga (2.61), Ligue 1 (2.60) and Serie A (2.59) . And what about the fervor in the stadiums? Since the start of the season, 11 million spectators have flocked to English venues to watch the best players on the planet play.

The hegemony of the Premier League is not about to fade away. Its clubs will pocket 7.8 billion euros in TV rights over the period 2025-2029. That's almost 2 billion per season, not counting international rights. Another world. In France, the Professional Football League (LFP) was expecting one billion euros over four years for the sale of national AND international rights. The auctions are not expected to reach this amount, and the upcoming departure of superstar Kylian Mbappé risks dealing a blow to the valuation. England and his can see it coming.

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